Health economics is concerned with issues of efficiency, effectiveness, value, health behaviours and the functioning of healthcare systems. We need a health system which provides the best services not because those who can shout the loudest insist on them but because they are high-value, fair, equitable, transparent and evidence-based. Australia has no shortage of pressing public health problems and we need to get spending right on healthcare if we are to meet future population needs.
The Health Economics team has operated since May 2016 and is led by Associate Professor Louisa Gordon. Research has focused on economic evaluations and decision-modelling of healthcare interventions that span a wide range of health conditions and populations. The lab has three main themes of applied health economics: cancer control strategies (from prevention through to treatments); clinical genomics and measuring low-value healthcare.
Economic evaluations in health care involve systematically assessing the costs and patient outcomes of new services and technologies to determine their cost-effectiveness or value for money. This usually involves both short-term ‘within-trial’ analyses and long-term decision-analytic modelling. Ultimately this work assists in the translation of experimental research of effective interventions into clinical practice so that effective services also demonstrate good economic value or sustainable cost-savings. The team also highlights areas of economic inefficiency where healthcare resources are misused and assesses the economics of the important role that disease prevention initiatives have on population health.
Team Head and Senior Research Fellow: Associate Professor Louisa Gordon
- Thomas Elliot, Senior Research Assistant
- Astrid Rodriguez-Acevedo, Research Officer
- Michelle Roets, PhD student
Associate Professor Louisa Gordons’ complete list of publications can be viewed at her Google Scholar page.
- We undertook this important systematic review on the impact of global changes to sunbed tanning behaviours since IARC stated the dangers of this for skin cancer development. Led by Astrid, this paper provides strong evidence that regulation is working to prevent a common disease.
- Rodriguez-Acevedo AJ, Green AC, Sinclair C, van Deventer E, Gordon LG. Indoor tanning prevalence after the International Agency for Research on Cancer’s statement on carcinogenicity of artificial tanning devices: systematic review and meta-analysis. Br J Dermatol; Aug 2019 doi: 10.1111/bjd.18412.
- Lead a systematic review of financial toxicity among cancer survivors – published in The Patient – Patient-Centred Outcomes Research 2017; 1-15. This was an invited article where I am seen as a leader on this topic. It has received much attention and support by psychosocial health researchers and 15 citations in the first 9 months of publication.
- Contributed to Australian clinical practice guidelines for the diagnosis and management of Barrett’s Esophagus and Early Esophageal Adenocarcinoma. This has been disseminated via Cancer Australia online networds and published in J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2015; 30(5)804-820. 32 citations. This guidelines paper was the result of a working party of clinicians and researchers specifically designed to influence clinical practice in this field in Australia and internationally.
- Lead a systematic review on the health system costs of skin cancer and cost-effectiveness of skin cancer prevention and screening – published in European Journal of Cancer Prevention 2015; 21(2),141-149. 45 citations This is the first review of the economic evidence of skin cancer globally and was repeatedly quoted and highlighted at the 3rd International Conference in UV and Skin Cancer Prevention.I was asked to present this at a WHO meeting (remotely) in Belgium 2016.
- Generating health utilities for economic evaluations – the quality of life experiences for people who have multiple skin cancers
- Financial distress after cancer – developing and testing a new survey
- The risks and benefits of sun exposure: striking the right balance
- Investigating patterns of care and economic costs is long-term cancer survivors
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